Rob Neyer references famous baseball writer Tom Boswell in discussing how risky it is to pick pitchers with the number one amateur draft pick. Here’s the Reds’ first round draft history.

Only one pitcher in the last six years (Homer Bailey), but four of the previous five, and six of the previous eight years were pitchers. We’re just now starting to get real production out of our draft selections.

When it comes to “figuring it out” as players age, that seems to apply to pitchers more than hitters. And, for pitchers, it usually comes to working out a new pitch or a new grip that breaks oddly. Baseball Prospectus used to say there’s no such thing as a pitching prospect, and that every successful young pitcher will need to go through his requisite surgery before arriving. Bill James says that hitters can usually be projected, but it seems the star prospect pitchers don’t seem to make it, while the successful ones seem to come out of nowhere.

Meanwhile, our minor league strength is now hitters, specifically at third base. Do we draft a pitcher this year? The draft is less than a month away.